People often ask me, “How do you balance work, parenting, and life?” As one who has struggled to maintain balance all of my life, I feel for those who are currently trying to accomplish this. What I’ve learned in my years of being a pediatrician, wife, and mom is that the key to a balanced life is knowing your priorities.
Make your priorities crystal clear and write them down.
This sounds a bit obvious, but what gets us in trouble isn’t that we don’t know what our priorities are; rather it’s the ability to keep them front and center on a daily basis.
Most of us who believe in God know that He comes first. But do we pray daily? We also know that our spouse and kids are more important than work, but do we make sure that we listen to our spouse and kids as much as we do friends, co-workers or employees? Probably not.
If you write down: God first, marriage second, kids third, work fourth, then making these your priorities will be much easier.
God first, marriage second, kids third, work fourth.
Keep it simple.
I try and keep things very simple. If you want to have a good day and you believe that God comes first, start the day praying. You can keep it short, but asking God’s direction for the day and thanking Him that you get to live another will lend itself to an entirely different type of day.
One thing to remember: making God a priority means praying and listening, not simply working for Him 24/7. There is a big difference. Most of us are more comfortable working for someone rather than being with them.
If family comes second and work third, then make time to talk to family members and listen to them as much as you would to a friend or employee. The truth is, most of us are much nicer to strangers than to our spouses and kids. Reverse that.